"Old Ball Coach" as a quasi-title is already taken, and Adam Gase at 41 isn't that old. But the Jets' head coach had the pulled-low baseball cap and Jets sweats and gravelly voice and proper optimism all in place after the first practice of the team's voluntary veteran minicamp today.
"For me, it was fun to get out there because we've been in meetings the whole time," Gase said of the Jets' offseason schedule to this point. "Just getting out there, running around, kind of seeing guys put things together that we've been talking about on tape and in the playbook, to seem them actually try to go execute some of the stuff, it's kind of fun to know our process has started and we'll just keep getting better from here."
The energy level is normally high for NFL teams at this time of year. But for the Jets, they're starting a new program under an old-school HC who brings his own drive to the job.
And then there's the bark and the bite supplied by defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, who was heard loud and clear on this day one.
"It's exactly what I envisioned, or however you want to say it," Gase said. "We've competed against each other so many times. I know what it is. I've seen him stand on the numbers on the field after they sack us or get a pick-six or something, probably saying some nice things to me. I love his energy, I love what he brings to our building, I love what he brings to our players. It's what we want."
See the Green & White on the Practice Field for the First Time in 2019 During Voluntary Minicamp
S Jamal Adams seconded that emotion when he said of Williams' energy is "through the roof."
The coaches have lots of help. Gase said he knows QB Sam Darnold "has been itching to get out there and start throwing" and to really start getting Gase's and O-coordinator Dowell Loggains' system down.
And the coach loves what he's seeing from big-ticket unrestricted free agency signing C.J. Mosley.
"He doesn't say much. He's focused on what he has to do," Gase said of his new MLB. "You talk to him on the field, he's wired into what he's doing. He's all football."
The coach had similar things to say about the offense's big UFA signing, Le'Veon Bell, even though the running back was not in attendance at today's practice.
"He was here that first week and we got a lot of good information to him. And the good thing is having iPads and things like that helps you. If a guy's not here, he can keep up on what we're doing as far as the playbook goes," Gase said ."Really for him, he has a pretty good training regimen he goes through. He knows how to get his body ready for training camp and the regular season. He's been doing this for a minute." Meaning, of course, many minutes over many seasons.
But like every head coach at every level of football, Gase said he'll coach the players in the building and on the field. And the Jets who are back at the Atlantic Health Training Center have impressed him with how they're responding so far.
"I've really enjoyed, anytime we've had a team meeting, just how attentive, how alert these guys are," he said. "They're eager to learn, they always come with the right attitude. There's been a good energy."
And the Jets are just getting started.